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Practical Technology
Computers in Libraries - Westport
Subjects: Librarians; Mental disorders; Internet access; Disasters; Emergency preparedness; Mental health care; Collaboration; Consortia; Local elections; Library associations; State libraries
Author: West, Jessamyn
Date: Jan/Feb 2017
Start Page: 10
Pages: 3
Section: The Systems Librarian
Abstract (Document Summary)

In 2011, Federal Emergency Management Agency decided to make libraries eligible for temporary relocation and assistance during major disasters and emergencies because they are classified as an essential service. This has given libraries some leverage for helping their communities in these sorts of situations, but often library staffers don't have the specific training or skill set to effectively respond. Recently, the New Jersey State Library received a grant from a local utility company to create The Librarian's Disaster Planning and Community Resiliency Guidebook, which helps libraries deal with their patrons and set expectations with other municipal organizations about what libraries can do and cannot do. Another state library initiative is Mental Health First Aid. This is a project that the California State Library is doing in conjunction with the National Council for Behavioral Health, using Library Services and Technology Act money to start a Mental Health First Aid Instructor Certification Program.

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